What’s The Future Of The WordPress Widget?

I happily write about and teach people WordPress.

With all the excitement building towards the launch of the Full Site Editing era, is it any wonder that every other aspect of WordPress is feeling ignored? Exhibit A is the forgotten and forlorn widget, the ugly duckling of WordPress.

The poor widget has not gotten any love by WordPress developers in years. It’s still the reliable drag and drop UI which gives site builders an easy way to create headers, footers, sidebars, and even pages. The widget screen of the WP Admin looks like this:

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Screenshot of current WordPress widget screen

But the widget screen is about to get more than a facelift in 2021 after a stumble out of the gate last year. Out goes the widgets and in come Gutenberg blocks. Rather than dropping in a widget, you’ll soon be dropping a block into a UI that is likely to look like this:

Screenshot of future WordPress widget screen

Exactly how will this work? Have a look at my short video which explains everything. (How can I see the future of WordPress? Watch the video!)

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But That's Not The End Of The Story. It's Only The Beginning

The poor widget, as you have known it, is likely to disappear over time. Why’s that? With Full Site Editing you will be able to create templates, and within a template you’ll make your headers, footers, and sidebars if desired. Within those elements you’ll add any kind of block.

If and when that happens, the WordPress widget era will likely come to an end.

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